Sierra, which has operations in Peru and Mexico, posted a US$10.8mn profit in Q2 compared with a US$2.8mn loss a year earlier as sales rose 29% to US$62.7mn from US$48.6mn, the Toronto-based company said in a statement.
All-in sustaining costs (AISCs) were US$9.56/oz silver equivalent in the quarter compared with US$13.4/oz the previous year. Sierra had US$21.8mn in cash and US$41.5mn in debt through June 30.
Sierra produced 692,000oz silver, 8.62Mlb (3,910t) copper, 7.1Mlb lead, 20.3Mlb zinc and 1,814oz gold in Q2, compared with 616,000oz silver, 5.32Mlb copper, 8.47Mlb lead, 18.5Mlb zinc and 1,312oz gold a year ago. The company said it posted record output at its Yauricocha (Peru) and Bolívar (Mexico) mines in the quarter.
The company's Cusi mine in Mexico is on track to double processing capacity to 1,200t/d by early 2019 once it installs a second ball mill and widens a mine ramp at the Santa Rosa de Lima zone to enable the use of bigger trucks, CEO Igor Gonzales said in a conference call to discuss financial results. Sierra also plans to increase capacity at Bolívar to 3,500t/d by the end of this year.
Exploration included 8,366m of diamond drilling at Yauricocha, 7,403m at Bolívar and 11,376m at Cusi. The company looks to invest US$6mn in exploration this year, COO Gordon Babcock said on the same call.
Vancouver-based First Majestic posted a US$40mn loss in the second quarter compared with a US$1.4mn profit a year earlier due to a US$31.7mn impairment charge for halting operations at its high-cost La Guitarra mine in Mexico in July, the company said in a statement. Sales rose 33% to US$79.7mn from US$60.1mn.
AISCs were US$16.4/oz silver equivalent from US$14.2/oz a year earlier, the company said. The firm, which had US$109mn in cash through June 30, allocated US$26.6mn to capex in the quarter.
First Majestic, which closed a US$187mn takeover of Primero Mining in May, boosted silver equivalent production by 32% to 5.14Moz in Q2, comprising 2.76Moz silver, 25,449oz gold, 3.95Mlb lead and 1.38Mlb zinc.
The company earlier this year set 2018 production guidance at 20.5-22.6Moz silver equivalent.